In a blog post published Tuesday, LIMRA noted two-thirds of respondents said they felt the economy would be the same or better in 2015, according to LIMRA’s Consumer Sentiment Tracking: October 2014 Update.
On the other hand, more than half of respondents said they currently had an unfavorable view of the economy, so expecting 2015 to be more of the same is faint praise.
However, the survey found that positive sentiment is growing, albeit slowly. The percentage of respondents with a positive view of the economy grew from 21 percent to 28 percent, with men being more likely to claim optimism.
The percentage of people optimistic about their own financial situations grew more substantially. The report found a third of respondents felt their situation would improve next year, up from 25 percent in 2014.
An examination of different generations’ optimism indicates millennials may be a little naïve about their financial situation. Over half said they expect to be better off in 2015, while Gen X (32 percent) and boomers (29 percent) were much less likely to be optimistic.
The Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index found a similar increase in optimism in its October report. The overall index increased to 94.5 from 89 in September. The Present Situation Index increased only slightly from 93 to 93.7. However, the Expectations Index jumped to 95 from 86.4.
Lynn Franco, director of economic indicators at The Conference Board, said in a statement that consumers have a “more favorable assessment of the current job market and business conditions,” which contributed to the slight improvement in their view of the current situation.
“Looking ahead, consumers have regained confidence in the short-term outlook for the economy and labor market, and are more optimistic about their future earnings potential,” she added.